Brock Lesnar is now one-year into his WWE return and in the last twelve months Brock has only wrestled two different opponents. With The Rock’s status in jeopardy, who could possibly be next for the former WWE and UFC champion?
Brock wrestled only two times in 2012 and is already down one match in 2013. My hunch is that Brock is good for one-two matches before WrestleMania 30. The problem is figuring out who best to match Lesnar up with. Who gives him the best match? Which match is the big draw? What in the world do you do between now and WrestleMania with big Brock?
Here is a look at who I think are the top five candidates for the job. They aren’t all the best but they make the most sense when you look at the big picture. In no particular order here are the top five opponents available for Brock Lesnar’s next match, presumably at SummerSlam 2013.
CM Punk - Punk is the obvious top choice here and the biggest draw for Lesnar out of the realistic opponents. I still have a feeling that last week’s Highlight Reel is a set up for some kind of a Punk babyface turn. A babyface Punk vs. Lesnar is money! The problem is that someone would have to lose. You don’t want to turn Punk babyface, set up this big match with Lesnar, and then have him lose at SummerSlam. On the flip side you don’t want to have Lesnar coming into WrestleMania off of a loss. The finish here would be one of the most anticipated stories of the year heading into SummerSlam. I certainly expect to see this match at some point in Lesnar’s tenure. Whether it is SummerSlam 2013 or another show is to be determined. How about babyface Brock vs. heel Punk?
Sheamus – It is amazing when you look at the roster how big the separation is from Punk to the next tier of WWE superstars. It is a far cry from the 1980s that’s for sure. After Punk I think Sheamus is the logical choice here. Sheamus is a great opponent in that you can have him lose yet get him over at the same time. WWE brass believes that Sheamus is a big part of the future as a top guy. Unfortunately he really hasn’t caught on as a babyface and seems to be languishing since losing the WWE world heavyweight title. This is a great opportunity to shoot Sheamus back to the top and give Lesnar a win that actually helps the guy doing the job.
Randy Orton - The rumor was that the WWE were planning to move in this direction last year around this time for the last SummerSlam. Orton is a tough one because I think at the right time that this match could be money. That said, now is not the right time. Orton needs a major winning streak and should be coming off a big feud before he jumps into the ring with Brock. I am not even quite sure how you get here logically. Again this is a matter of looking at the roster and seeing who is available for the former UFC superstar. Orton fits the bill although with a heel turn pending, that may change.
Ryback - Ryback? Yes Ryback! How does this happen when both are heels? I don’t think Ryback is turning back this quickly although once he’s done with Cena there is no point to keep him heel. What about Brock turning babyface? It’s definitely coming and now would be too soon but it’s not out of the realm of possibility. Look at how hard it is to find a decent opponent between now and WrestleMania for Brock. It isn’t much easier if he’s a babyface but at least you can buy a little time. A heel Ryback against a babyface Lesnar could be the intriguing match that WWE fans are looking for here.